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Iowa's Lee, Minnesota's Steveson share wrestling's top award

The winner of the award, presented by WIN magazine, is determined by fan vote and a committee made up of past winners, retired coaches and select media.

Iowa's Spencer Lee and Minnesota's Gable Steveson have been named winners of the Dan Hodge Trophy as the most dominant college wrestlers in 2020-21.

The announcement Monday marked the first time in the award's 20-year history that two wrestlers shared the honor.

Lee won the Hodge last year, and last week he became a three-time NCAA champion at 125 pounds. Steveson won his first heavyweight national title.

The winner of the award, presented by WIN magazine, is determined by fan vote and a committee made up of past winners, retired coaches and select media.

Lee overwhelmingly won the fan vote, but the committee overrode the vote and picked co-winners because Lee and Steveson were on nearly equal terms when it came to assessing criteria for the award.

Lee was a 12-0 with five pins, three technical falls and four major decisions. Lee earned bonus points in 92% of his matches. 

Steveson was 17-0 with four pins, seven technical falls and three major decisions. He earned bonus points in 88% of his matches and gave up just one takedown.

Steveson will compete this week in the U.S. Olympic wrestling trials for a spot on the team that will go to Tokyo in July. Lee withdrew from the trials because of torn anterior cruciate ligaments in his knees. He tore his left ACL a few days before the NCAA Tournament but competed anyway.

The trophy is named for the late Dan Hodge, the undefeated three-time NCAA champion for Oklahoma in the 1950s who was known for his aggressiveness and pinning prowess. Hodge, who died in December, never lost and never was taken down as a collegian.

Also receiving first-place votes were Iowa State 157-pounder David Carr and Penn State 133-pounder Roman Bravo-Young, both of whom won national titles.

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More AP sports: https://apnews.com/hub/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports 

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